Brahmi MSS discovery in Kathmandu?

Michael Witzel witzel at FAS.HARVARD.EDU
Tue Jan 21 17:26:56 UTC 2003

Yesterday this was reported in the Nepalese press, about the Chabhel Stupa,
east of KTM proper just before reaching Bauddha (Bodhnath).

The Chabel/Carumati stupa is supposed to have been built by Asoka's
daughter Carumati:

see pict. today at :  and check for text,

"          Charumati stupa renovation

                                Chabahil locals have formed a committee to
restore the crumbling Charumati Stupa, which had developed cracks because of
                                heavy vehicular traffic on the nearby road.

                                The fourth-century stupa has relics dating
from the Lichhavi period .....
                                Priceless ancient artefacts, coins, and
manuscripts have been found during the renovation work, and archaeologists
say more
                                could be found if the whole stupa could
have been rebuilt. It has also been discovered that Charumati, like the
rest of
                                Kathmandu Valley shrines, have been revered
by both Hindus and Buddhists. Hindu deities like Bishnu and Narayan have
                                found among the Buddhist relics.

                                "We are looking at the coins and the
manuscripts, but it will need more study before we can date them with
accuracy," says
                                Prakash Darnal from the Department of
Archaeology who is involved in the renovation work. The manuscripts are
said to be in
                                the ancient Brahmi script. rh
Jan.20  "

However, my friends in Kathmandu tell me:

*archaeologists say that NO manuscripts were found, and only an inscribed
brick was found : "clearly a fake".
Further, a small copper plate inscription that still is under
investigation. No pics yet.

Another false alarm, unfortuately,  just as the one about early Tamil
inscriptions, recently.
Not to speak of other "discoveries"  :-)

Cheers! MW
Michael Witzel
Department of Sanskrit & Indian Studies, Harvard University
2 Divinity Avenue, Cambridge MA 02138, USA

ph. 1- 617-496 2990 (also messages)
home page:

More information about the INDOLOGY mailing list